The final season of HBO’s brilliant, razor-sharp political satire is rather undone by its inability to match the real-life absurdities of the current American Presidential administration. With so much daily political chaos that furiously consumes media cycles, it’s hard for the show to compete with the level of surreal idiocy we see in real life on a daily basis, and so the events on the show end up hitting two concurrent roadblocks: Nothing going on is worse than what we’ve gotten used to seeing, and simultaneously the show makes a self-conscious effort to up the ante on its characters’ shenanigans. It all becomes a little redundant rather quickly, but luckily this season is only seven episodes so it doesn’t really ever wear out its welcome. Of course the cast is absolutely extraordinary as usual, with Julia Louis-Dreyfus continuing career-best work as Selina Meyer, who here pursues a second Presidential ambition with the same mixture of ruthlessness and cluelessness. The final episode is one of the show’s best, finding a natural conclusion that highlights the chaotic, anything-goes nature of Washingtonian political wealings and dealings while also providing an impressive amount of closure that’s entirely satisfying. So, while it’s not quite as fresh and incisive as the seasons that came before, this season sundowns the show on a dignified note and gives Louis-Dreyfus plenty of opportunities to shine.
Rating: ★★★ (out of 5)